He is barely old enough to go to infant school, let alone fight in a savage civil war. Yet this youngster, believed to be just four years old, is one of the latest ‘cub jihadists’ recruited for bloody battle in Syria.
He can be seen firing rounds from an automatic assault rifle in a shocking video that has emerged from the war-torn country.
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Counter-terrorism officials say it is further evidence of how jihadists are grooming children to become fighters, as Al Qaeda factions strive to establish a Taliban-like Islamic state in Syria.
The disturbing footage was posted on YouTube and is believed to be that of a son of a jihadist from Albania who is one of thousands of foreigners fighting with Al Qaeda in Syria.
The youngster, who wears a black ski mask, can be seen firing shots from a black AK-47-style automatic assault rifle with a folding stock.
He is so small that the barrel of the gun has to be supported by a section of road block so that he can cope with its weight. The child opens fire to shouts of Allahu Akbar – Arabic for ‘God is Greater’ – before an arm reaches down and retrieves the weapon.
Warfare: The footage comes amid warnings that up to 700 young British extremists are fighting in Syria
Shocking: More photos show children as young as nine at a training camp toting guns and wearing ski masks
The issue – which has become a key focus for the security and intelligence services – was among topics discussed by Mr Hollande and Mr Cameron. Syria is proving a popular training ground for would-be jihadists.